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When you make the decision to hire a marketing agency, there’s a reason. Some of the main reasons we discussed in an earlier blog, “In-House Vs. Outsource Marketing – Maximizing Results for Your Brand,” include: gaining an outside perspective, working with experts in your industry or niche and expanding your team without the headache of a large, in-house staff. An extension of your team, an agency can help you with a specific initiative, like launching a product, a specific goal, such as increasing brand awareness, or all of the above! A key factor to the success of the relationship is  to ensure that the agency understands your “why,” or the core purpose and driving factor of your brand. As they say, good things come to those who collaborate and the following tips set the stage for an effective relationship with your agency that pushes boundaries, sets new standards and directly benefits your audience. Remember… 

Sharing is More than Caring, It’s Essential 

A phrase that bears repeating, communication is key to any successful relationship. When working with a marketing agency, it’s important to keep them in the loop and vice versa! Here are some examples.

Client Responsibilities:  

  • Update the agency on any changes at your organization, including:
    • Goals, objectives and company vision
    • Internal changes that may affect marketing
    • New products, services, etc. 
    • Upcoming activities, such as webinars, podcast features and media coverage
  • Share sensitivities, givens and must-haves (especially when it comes to creative projects). As a rule of thumb, too much information is far better than too little information so remember to share away! 

Agency Responsibilities:

  • Conduct research about the client’s industry, as a whole, as well as on its customers and competitors.
  • Combine the primary and secondary research, or the Orange Exploration and View From The Field, as Orange Label calls it, with client-supplied information to continuously bring in new ideas.
  • Share marketing best practices, insights and trends

Where Emails Fall Short, Meetings Thrive 

We all know the saying, “I survived a meeting that could have been an email,” but what about when it’s the other way around? There’s a lot at stake in sending in an email that could have been a quick phone call or (virtual) meeting. Eliminating the back-and-forth in favor of a quick conversation not only nurtures the relationship, it can help spark new ideas while providing additional context that may have otherwise been left unsaid. In this case, both client and agency responsibilities are the same. 

Client AND Agency Responsibilities: 

  • Remain available for brainstorming and collaboration – whether it’s via phone, video call or a socially distanced meeting, don’t underestimate the power of conversation and connection! 
  • Establish and maintain an Open Feedback Loop, a process in which you listen and talk to one another then make changes based on repetitive evaluations to advance return on investment (ROI). 

Keep a Pulse on Performance

Like many aspects of life, sales and marketing are driven by results. Conducting periodic check-ins on how your company and marketing is performing, and then sharing those results with one another allows operations to move efficiently and efforts to be focused accordingly. Here are some of the performance metrics to keep in mind for both clients and agencies. 

Client Responsibilities: 

  • Keep the agency informed on top-line financial performance indicators, such as sales and revenue data or other data that the agency may not have access to. This can provide insights on what to focus marketing on and channel advertising dollars into. 

Agency Responsibilities:

  • Share regular reports on analytics and data, and provide key insights and action items directly from it. At Orange Label, we conduct monthly Results and Momentum meetings with our clients to share top-performing content, marketing key performance indicators (KPIs), such as new customer growth, conversions and cost per lead (CPL), important takeaways and recommendations for the next month. 

Let Your Expertise Shine 

Insights are important for both clients and agencies to share with one another. Both leaders in your respective fields, you each have something extraordinary to bring to the table. Clients know their specific industries through and through, and can provide irreplaceable insider context. The same is true for marketers. Here’s how to combine each into an unstoppable force. 

Client Responsibilities: 

  • Distribute information on industry changes, competition, nuances, pain points and sensitivities as they arise. 
  • Don’t be afraid to share outside material that has caught your attention, it helps provide the agency with your preferences, likes and dislikes, and may be able to be used for inspiration in the future.

Agency Responsibilities: 

  • Utilize all research, provided context and marketing expertise to create the work! This can include brand development,  all-encompassing media strategy, content, web design and more. 
  • In the ever-changing world of marketing and technology, continue to share best practices and emerging tools with clients that may be applicable to their company or industry. 
  • Provide recommendations on how to navigate current events, such as COVID-19. During the past eight months, Orange Label was quick to adjust content strategies, share insights on how to move forward and maintain marketing momentum, extend support to customers and remain current on industry guidelines. 

Dating back to the age-old marketing “rule of seven,” which states that it takes seven interactions with your brand before a purchase takes place, marketing requires consistency. A marketing agency can help you achieve just that through quality work and expert insights. When choosing the right one for you, there’s power in hiring the agency that’s the collaborator, suggestion maker, risk-taker and creator, instead of the order-taker. Always there to provide support and suggestions, Orange Label could be in your corner – ready to collaborate and deliver the results you’re looking for. Contact us today to learn more.

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Founded in 1972

As Orange County’s longest-standing, privately held response marketing agency, we have witnessed dynamic shifts in the world of marketing. Through it all, we have ensured our clients stay at the forefront of communication and technology, driving response and value with every new endeavor.